I truly believe the Greek cuisine is one of the best, especially for me, a cheese lover! The food in Greece was definitely one of the things I was most excited about. I didn’t do any research about restaurants prior to leaving as everyone has different tastes and opinions. But I wasn’t disappointed, that’s for sure. Fresh vegetables, amazing seasoning on well cooked meat and sea food made for a great combination everywhere we went to. The one thing you should remember is to always make a reservation before you go; it can be very hard to get a table – was the case for us, even though we were there outside of the high season! Here are 10 restaurants I tried during my week in Santorini. I separated the list below by towns to make it easier for you to plan your culinary experience in Greece.
This is a small restaurant right across the street from the 270 Oias View hotel. It was the first place we tried upon arriving, and although it was good, I wouldn’t put it on the top of my list. I ordered a Greek salad which was delicious. The tomatoes and cucumbers in Greece are so much better than those we get in the UK. For our mains we had chicken breast with French fries which was very nicely seasoned, and a salmon with salad. We were also served fresh bread with olive oil before the food arrived.
This is a restaurant with an amazing view of Oia. Here, we were introduced to some great Santorini wines by ways of a small tasting, and were offered fried calamari, the special of the day. For dinner we opted for a delightful Santorini salad, salmon with small potatoes and red snapper fish caught locally near the volcano. For dessert we ordered crème Brule which was served on fire.
Another place with a stunning panoramic view. It was a little bit overpriced but as is true for most places in Oia, you are also paying for the view. We ordered mussels, chicken risotto and chicken breast served with potatoes. It was very good but I am not sure if it was worth the money.
4. Sunset Ammoudi Taverna
The Ammoudi Taverna is a nice sunset restaurant situated in Ammoudi Bay. To get there, you either need to take a taxi or walk down quite a lot of stairs. We went there for the Easter celebration so it weren’t just served great food, but an overall amazing atmosphere with a lot of live music and people dancing in the middle of the restaurant. It was very busy but the staff did a fantastic job catering to all the tables. And any time they were even remotely late with bringing something to the table, they offered a few drinks and dessert on the house. As an appetizer we got saganaki, a fried cheese. (I have to say, it was the best I had on the entire trip) mussels and eggplant stuffed with feta cheese. As for dinner, we decided to share king crab legs and lobster pasta. The king crab was very good but unfortunately the lobster was a little bit dry and tasteless. It’s not cheap but definitely worth checking out (just don’t order the lobster 🙂 ).
Coffee bar serving great coffee. Make sure you try a frappe which is Greek coffee served with ice cream or milk over ice. We decided to try some food there as well. Naturally I immediately ordered tzatziki with pita bread and grilled halloumi which I saw it as an option on the menu and have to say it was very good. We also got mussels again but this time the mussels were giant almost bigger than clams and not very tasty.
I guess you can say Fanari was our favorite restaurant, as we came here twice. You will find it on your way down the stairs to the old port of Fira. It’s spread out over three levels with romantic view of the town and the volcano. The food didn’t disappoint either – we ordered saganaki (cheese), potato saganaki (potatoes with melted cheese), mussels (the best on the trip), zucchini balls served with tzatziki, dakos (something similar to bruschetta served with goat cheese) and salmon, all of which went down a treat!
7. Franco’s Café
While there is not a lot of advertising around Santorini, Franco’s café was advertised near the castle so we decided to give it a try. It has a lovely roof terrace, perfect for relaxing with a glass of wine and a view of the village. They don’t serve full menus but you can order small appetisers. We got a plate of meatballs and a Greek plate (served with olives, tomatoes, cucumber and cheese). Everything was very appetising so definitely check it out.
8. Pyrgos Tavern
Located 5 min away from the city center, this is a huge restaurant with great views and even better food. We ordered hellenic salad (Greek salad), monuri grilled Greek cheese with cherry tomatoes jam and bacon (super delicious), chicken filets with sweet and sour sauce, sea bass and port medallions with vinsanto sauce
This restaurant is located right next to the beach. It was a cold day so it was empty but I bet it gets very busy during the summer. There are a few other places around but I chose this one as it has good music, which, to me, immediately equates good vibes! The food was great too. We ordered cheese savanaki (I told you I’m a cheese fan! ), grilled halloumi, cheese souvlaki (apparently souvlaki means square, so if you order it you will get your veggies, chicken etc. in squares) and salmon spaghetti.
I spotted this restaurant driving back from the Donkey Brewery. It’s located between Pyros and Fira, on a turn up the hill, so it’s quite easy to miss. It’s last on my list here but it was definitely my favourite on the whole trip. Isn’t it funny how you always find the best places on your last day of any holiday? It’s a meze place from what I understood, similar to Spanish tapas. First of all they had cheap wine – always a plus! You could get 0.5l for only 5euros – everywhere else you pay at least 20 euros per bottle. For starters we got hot bread served with mustard and butter, saganaki, stuffed potatoes and Portobello mushrooms with feta cheese – amazing! For mains we got chicken cubes with vegetables and chicken breast wrapped with prosciutto. In the end we also got free dessert: heavenly pancetta. I couldn’t recommend this place more, make sure you visit it!
I have to say dining in Santorini is expensive. Especially if you like to try new things and order a lot, like me. There are alternatives, like small gyro spots serving gyro (chicken or lamp packed into a pita bread with tzatziki and French fries), and other food for no more than 5 euros. You can also go to the grocery store and cook at home if you have a kitchen at your disposal. Small shops are spread out around the island, we found the best and the biggest one in Kamari…on our last day of course!
What to eat in Santorini :
- Saganaki – fried cheese
- Greek salad – tomatoes, cucumber, olives, feta cheese and peppers
- Santorini salad – each place have different option but they always with tomatos, cucumbers and cheese
- Kofta – balls of minced balls, similar to meatballs made of pork, beef or lamp
- Moussaka – eggplant or potato based dish with beef or lamb ( similar to sheperds pie)
- Souvlaki – squere pieces of meat or vegetables
- Gyros – meat wrapped in flatbread with tomato, onion, tzaztiki and fries
- Spanikopita – spinach pie
- Tzatziki – yougurt and cucumber dip
- Fava – mashed fava beans
- Tomatokeftedes – tomato frittes